Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a visual condition in which people are unable to see far away objects clearly.1 People with myopia will need vision correction in the form of either glasses or contact lenses to be able to see clearly in the distance. Myopia is also a risk factor for other ocular diseases such as retinal detachment, myopic maculopathy, cataract and glaucoma.2,3
The onset of myopia typically starts during childhood and progresses throughout the teenage years. While currently there is no cure for myopia, the good news is that there is a range of preventative methods that can effectively manage myopia progression. Some of these methods, such as healthy visual habits, are easy to implement starting right at home!
Children 19 years of age and younger qualify for annual full eye examinations covered by OHIP. During the full eye examination, your optometrist may detect risk factors for myopia or discover that your child has developed a myopic refractive error. We recommend that your child have a full eye examination prior to a Myopia Management Consultation.
Although traditional glasses and contact lenses correct blurry vision, they do not stop the progression of myopia. In other words, your child’s vision can get worse over time without proper management. The goal of Myopia Management is to slow the progression of myopia using treatments that are supported by scientific research and safe for your child.
While there is no way to completely stop or reverse myopia progression, there are various treatment options to slow the rate of progression.1
At Insight Eyecare, we view people as inherently unique, so there is no one treatment that fits all. We are excited to offer a range of Myopia Management options to our patients:
Soft, daily disposable contact lenses that correct your child’s refractive error and have been clinically proven to slow the progression of myopia in age-appropriate children.2
During the Myopia Management Consultation, your optometrist will perform tests that help determine your child’s eligibility for treatment and discuss options for myopia management.
Contact our office to schedule a Myopia Management Consultation.
A Myopia Management Consultation is approximately one hour long. During the assessment, your optometrist will check your child’s vision, refractive error (myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism) as well as additional tests.
The optometrist will measure the length of your child’s eyes from the cornea (front surface) to the retina (the tissue at the back of the eye). They will also perform corneal topography which maps the surface of the eye. The tests are quick, non-invasive and help in the planning and monitoring of your child’s treatment.
The optometrist will assess the coordination of the eyes (binocular vision) and focusing skills.
Eye drops will be used during the examination that temporarily dilate your child’s pupils and relax the muscles that are responsible for focusing. The refractive error will be checked again after the use of these drops to ensure the most accurate results are obtained. The optometrist will also check the health of your child’s eyes.
A specialized camera is used to obtain non-invasive baseline images of your child’s fundus (back of the eye).
The optometrist will discuss options and make a recommendation for the best method for Myopia Management for your child considering their results, their lifestyle, and the best plan for you as a family.
The frequency of follow-up assessments vary depending on the type of treatment recommended and how your child’s eyes are responding to treatment. Once a treatment plan has been successfully established, your child will have an assessment every three to six months. The frequency may be increased if there are modifications required to their plan.
Axial length refers to the length of your child’s eyes from the cornea (front surface) to the retina (the tissue at the back of the eye). It is an important metric in measuring the progression of myopia and determining the effectiveness of your child’s treatment plan. An effective management approach will slow down the rate of axial length elongation.
Corrective laser surgery can be safely performed for patients 18 years or older, who have healthy eyes and have a stable refractive error for at least two years.1 During laser eye surgery, the laser reshapes and removes a precise amount of tissue from your cornea.2
The higher the myopia, the more corneal tissue that needs to be removed. Proper myopia management will reduce the severity of the disease and the strength of the prescription later in life, thus increasing the success for LASIK later on.
Contact lenses are safe for use and have been approved for children. Just like any other medical devices, they require proper handling and care and compliance with the suggested wearing time. The optometrist will guide your child through the handling techniques and ensure that the fit of the contact lens and the vision it provides, are safe for your child.
It was previously thought that the undercorrection of myopia in spectacles would help slow its progression, however more recent research has concluded that undercorrection may actually stimulate and accelerate eye growth due to the blurred vision at various distances.
Adapting to Myopia Control Spectacles can take one to two weeks. We recommend constant wear and to avoid sports during that period, until your child is comfortable with their vision.
Complaints of blurred vision1
Low risk of eye infections due to poor handling or wearing compliance
Initial discomfort- comfort may improve as your child adapts to the lenses
Low risk of eye infection, but strong adherence to lens care regimen and remaining highly observant for signs and symptoms are required, due to lenses being worn overnight2
Peripheral haloes/glare in dim and dark environments
Blurred vision which is expected to subside within 1-2 weeks of wearing the glasses
Peripheral haloes/glare in dim and dark environments
Some children may experience light sensitivity
Blurred vision at near3